* Posts by Drummer Boy

53 posts • joined 1 Mar 2011

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Oracle gives HR tool to track your fitness

Drummer Boy

As part of the excercise plan..............

Can I get a go on Larry's yacht?

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Dropbox-but-with-an-actual-box firm touts new biz appliances

Drummer Boy

Just implemented SynaMan at the office. Seems pretty good so far.

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Yes! New company smartphones! ... But I don't WANT one

Drummer Boy

Speaking as the guy responsible for sourcing our phones for my company. the selection criteria goes something like this:

Does the hardware allowance from the network cover new phones for all, at the smartphone level. If yes pick best phone for the job that the IT team can support.

If no, will CFO stump up the difference?

If No, what phones do our heavy road warrior users NEED (not want!), and will the budget have enough left to get all other users usable phones, with some smart features (eg Galaxy minis and not full size ones).

That's it for me!! Other elements are less important, as road warriors have car chargers and laptops, so battery life should be less important a consideration.

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BBC, ITV gang up on YouView with 'FreeView Connect'

Drummer Boy

I must admit, I got a BT box as part of a contract renewal, for the £49 install fee, and I like my little YouView box. I don't use any of the BT Services, but for freeview HD it's great, as a PVR is pretty darn good, and the integrated EPG for catchup and realtime services works well.

It is frustrating that all the different catchup TV services use a lot of different apps, but what the heck.

My only gripe, to make the box perfect (for me) is that it needs a streaming media app to connect to my NAS full of movies!

I've tried other boxes, such as WD TV Live, and even on these not all apps/catchup TV stations are available on all boxes.

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How your data loss prevention plan is killing your business

Drummer Boy

Start with the end in mind

This is what happens when you treat all data as equal. We run highly transactional DBs where the entire source data on a multi terabyte systems changes every 3 months. Holding db backups beyond that point has no purpose. On top of that we store the source, input, data so can restore most of the db by reloading source data. Any other data (usernames password tables and the like)are backed up and stored under a different retention scheme.

For me the key is to define your backup regime when creating, or design, the app,or install, with recovery in mind and be ruthless in removing data that has nofurther purpose.

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New EXPLICIT pics support notion of moist, welcoming past for Mars

Drummer Boy
Paris Hilton

I always understood

that pebbles were round as they abraded against each other, not by pure water (liquid) action?

Paris, as she's great for abrasion!

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Salesforce.com to reveal 'Company Communities'

Drummer Boy
FAIL

Great!

So now (as an IT Admin) I have to supply road warriors with large screen phones (with accompanying data contract), high spec laptop, and an iPad (others tablets just won't do!!). And pay Salesforce their fees as well.

See my costs spiral, whilst sales remain remarkably flat!!!

Fail from my perspective, in the old days there was an incentive for the sales guys to work from home in th evenings doing personal admin. Thanks Salesforce you're making them do it in the day time, when they should be selling instead!

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German court: 'Nein' to Apple 'global consent' on fanbois' privacy

Drummer Boy
Alert

Re: So much for the EU

EU laws are harmonised, this deals with data going outside of the EU.

The DPA (and other EEA country laws) set a minimum standard to allow the free passage of data, within the EEA (not just the EU).

Having said that certain types of info are more strongly protected in certain countries than others. The data here includes credit card numbers, so (theoretically) also falls under PCI-DSS, which makes DPA look like a walk in the park!!

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The politics of the data centre

Drummer Boy
Facepalm

Re: Stovepipes kill progress

I completely agree. I work with a small, multidisciplinary team, and we deal with providing services to large telcos.

A recent project involved us providing a recommendation on their hardware infrastructure to implement the new version of our app on. We spent a lot of time creating a doc that really detailed what was needed (down to SAN IOPs and latency levels), for the Customers server team to through it out. The customer was then less than happy when we told them their performance SLA was not valid, as they were not running on the recommended infrastructure.

I deal with a lot of 'vertical' skilled teams in customers, and my multidisciplinary team runs rings around 90% of them.

Segregation of duties is all well and good, but, if not done correctly, leads to a lot of gaps and grey areas that each team will exploit to it's full.

I think, with one customer, the lead time to implement a simple change is measured in months, due to trying to get 3, or 4, teams to play well together.

On the plus side, my organisation wins extra business, due to our responsiveness and flexibility!!

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Tech is the biggest problem facing archiving

Drummer Boy
FAIL

It's the same with paper

Financial records get shredded after 10 years, or so, so why not all other records?

Where I work we store offsite backups in destruction date order, as they are far more likely to be destroyed than accessed!

Also, the chances are, if you don;t need a backup in the first couple of years, you'll never need to access it.

Also, as time goes on, all your historical 'tapes' (I use tape as a unit of currency rather than a physical media) will fit onto a single, super capacity future tape format, so the on going transfer will be a single tape at a time.

Are we buying into the keep everything for ever trap, and what happens with 'Big Data' which doesn't even get backed up?

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Time to put 'Big Data' on a forced diet

Drummer Boy
Facepalm

Re: Stopy crying.

Exactly right - show me a properly costed business case every time.

No compelling business case, no money for big data!!

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US lawmaker blames bicycle breath for global warming gas

Drummer Boy
Joke

On this logic

Fatties should receive tax breaks.

They offer 2 advantages over people who exercise:

1) Less CO2 produced, due to no exercise

2) they operate as highly efficient carbon capture devices.

Providing they are buried and not cremated when they die, they are an ideal carbon capture and storage resource :-)

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Fashionably slate

Drummer Boy

Re: some things make sense, some don't

Just stick a Raspberry Pi in there provide a decent remote keyboard, and be done with it!!

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NHS IT bods 'walk out' in pay row with crashed UK tech giant 2e2

Drummer Boy
FAIL

Not quite

SME = Small to Medium Enterprise, so <20k is still an enterprise!

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Liferay's not dead yet - but what's keeping it alive?

Drummer Boy
Thumb Up

We like it

We use Liferay extensively at the place I work at. It's used for end customer products, and we contribute towards the code pool.

Given the prices charged for WebSphere/Weblogic and the like, it's no wonder that Liferay is doing well!!

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Engineers are cold and dead inside, research shows

Drummer Boy
Coat

Perhaps we've become cold and heartless

After trying to work with medical people on their requirements, and noting their entire lack of empathy with how software needs to be developed?

Or, as my wife recently said to a overly empathic nurse - 'Stop simpering over me like I'm a small child, and talk to me like an adult'!!

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London council £1bn outsourcing plan survives vote

Drummer Boy
FAIL

Re: It can work well

Outsourcing works well for items you don't have to do regularly, and for which it makes no sense to keep a person fully skilled and trained for.

Servicing your car is a great example of this.

Cloud computing is financially viable on exactly the same model.

BUT for things you do regularly, or long term then both outsourcing and cloud computing both fail the financial TCO test.

I deal with both, and know this for a fact!

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Universal Credit dole 'liable to be paralysed by IT cockups'

Drummer Boy
Thumb Down

I love the agile bit

Have any of us ever come across any public body that can work in an agile way? Their bureaucracy is so deep and so ingrained that agile just can't/won't work for them.

Agile requires a highly developed, and knowledgeable requirements management person, who can have firm needs, and knows the end result, and can stop their stakeholders from gold plating.

Scope creep is so endemic in most government projects, that they often times founder under the scales of creep employed.

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Amazon's Virginia cloud data center knocked out – again

Drummer Boy

Re: Cloud == resilient, no?

Based on my calculation cloud !=cheap either!!

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Griffin StompBox iOS pedalboard review

Drummer Boy

Speaking as a live audio professional, as a control surface tablets are OK, but not for the actual processing of sound. You still have to carry standby kit, in the live sound world, as stuff breaks, and the show must go on.

3.5mm jacks have no place on a stage, as they break too easily.

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CIOs urged to take BYOD pleas with pinch of salt

Drummer Boy
Unhappy

The problem is

As soon as your corporate data (esp personal data covered by the DPA) hits a personal device, the corporate loses control , but not responsibility.

If you fire a person who has synched their Outlook to their phone, and you fire them, you immediately have personal records (covered by the DPA) on a device that is not owned by an employee.

Even if they are still employed you have not rights (unless you get a court order) to examine he device, or to ensure data is deleted off it.

This is the huge Achilles heel in BYOD.

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Humax YouView DTR-T1000 IPTV Freeview PVR review

Drummer Boy
FAIL

No media streaming = fail

If it won't replace my 8 year old Topfield and my WD TV Live then it's not a win for me.

I need a box that works on terrestrial, records 2 channels, and watches a 3rd, allows me to see all UK catchup TV services, and works as a media streamer.

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HP Envy 4-1010ea 14in Ultrabook review

Drummer Boy
FAIL

How on earth

Can an i3 processor laptop be called an ultrabook??!!

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Why British TV drama is crap – and why this matters to tech firms

Drummer Boy
Facepalm

British drama terrible

Which will be why Downton Abbey is up for more Emmy's than I can shake a stick at then?!!

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D-Link DHP-1565 802.11n router with integrated powerline

Drummer Boy
Go

Nearly There

This is just what I need, but please can I have more than 4 network connections, and an ADSL router built in?.

Currently I have 4 on my ADSL router and another 4 on my NetGear Powerline hub, and it works a treat.

I have to plug in Xbox, WD TV Live Box, BD Player, TV plus NAS. I'd rather save WiFi bandwidth for laptops etc, so hard points are good for me.

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Cloud data fiasco forces bosses to break out the whiteboards

Drummer Boy
FAIL

Re: DSLReports

Agreed, but bad planning strikes more often than bad luck!! The more planning you do the luckier you get (to paraphrase a sports motto!)

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Britain prepares for government by iPad

Drummer Boy
FAIL

And when they are away from the 'Office' in Westminster and are required to work offline on documents - how are slabs going to help them then?

Oh, I know, they print them out, rather than having a laptop with reasonable storage, where they could work offline.

Slabs - great for reading the daily paper f-all use for much else in the business world!!

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Oracle RMAN straps on rocket, hands admins launch button

Drummer Boy

Re: "or think bemusedly how incredibly inefficient the previous process was?"

If it's anything like the Avamar client (same stable) it will also then do a deduplicate check on the block, and not transfer if a block is a copy of one already residing on the target server.

This is where is saves the bandwidth, not the other bit.

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Gov IT contractors hire staff in India to work on benefits system

Drummer Boy
Facepalm

I thought everyone knew

That outsourcing to India, does not cost less anymore. Yes the day rate you pay a developer is lower, but the management overheads of running offshore, and the sheer depth of detail design specs need to be written to quickly negates any saving in day rate.

Having been through this with a company I know first hand.

As for 24hr working, put a night shift on on the UK!! Or are they referring to taking advantage of poor worker treatment in the sub continent?

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Is private cloud the next step for the data centre?

Drummer Boy

Funnily enough

At an Oracle cloud event I attended 2 weeks ago the key note Gartner presenter stood up and announced that, in their research, if you already have a data centre, then a private cloud is far cheaper than going AWS etc.

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Microsoft's Azure cloud down and out for 8 hours

Drummer Boy
Facepalm

Does anyone else get the Private Cloud from MS ad in this comment section as well??!!!

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Report: Most council workers granted access to Facebook, Twitter

Drummer Boy
FAIL

Socail Media Usage

Says more about managers at public authorities than it does about people!!

All public authorities have acceptable usage policies, defining what employees can and can't do on works time.

If someone breaks the rules it's up to the manager to sort it out.

Unfortunately a lot (not all) of public authority managers are not very good managers.

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IT guy answers daughter's Facebook rant by shooting her laptop

Drummer Boy
Thumb Up

Respect through force?

You can't respect through force, but you can get compliance.

I'll settle for compliance!

For all the folks banging on about the use of lethal force - nothing living was killed, therefore the force was not lethal QED.

In that respect, if the guy had run it over with his truck (he must own a 'truck') then that too should be classed as using lethal force.

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Council fined £140k for leaking kids' sensitive info

Drummer Boy
WTF?

Tax payers

Come out even, as the fine is paid back to the tax payers.

Until the ICO can force public bodies to sack people fines are the only way to get their attention, unless anyone has a batter idea?

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NHS fined £375k after stolen patient data flogged on eBay

Drummer Boy

Trust, but verify, the bye words of security these days.

It may well be that the contractor had a contract to destroy harddrives - not knowing what may, or may not, have been on them.

The NHS has a duty to safe guard information, and that cannot be delegated.

A hard lesson to learn, but learn it they must.

One reason that public bodies need to be fined (not that I am happy about it) is that commercial organisations suffer commercially if they cock up and get in the news, as we, the consumers can vote with our feet; where this does not apply to public bodies.

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Xbox 720 to double-up as a DVR

Drummer Boy
Thumb Down

Use an XBox as a PVR

Not until they make it much quieter!!

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Microsoft beaten down 16pc on software sales to NHS

Drummer Boy
Meh

Read the small print

It's an additional 16% off the already discounted rate.

Although I do agree Open Source should be where they NHS is at.

Neither happy nor sad. Although reading the article it seems to suggest that the NHS has a 'shortfall' of licenses, so I'd rather spend money getting the correct licenses, than getting sued for punitive licenses should MS decide to audit the NHS!!

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New plastic telescope ammo machine gun is light as a rifle

Drummer Boy

Don't forget

The M60 is a derivative of the MG42, invented by ze Germans in WWII.

I see the ammo vs weapon issue in the same light as inkjet printers and ink manufacturers!!!

Over the lifetime of a military weapon (esp in the field) they will expend many times their purchase value in ammunition.

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Don't buy your iPad in a McDonald's car park

Drummer Boy
Coat

I wonder if it was made from

Applewood?

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New UK 'leccy meters remotely run via Voda 2G

Drummer Boy
Thumb Up

I must be the only one..................

who sees this a positive. 2G as not everyone has 3G in their area. Not supporting a plethora of differing comms methods broadband, powerline etc) makes life easy.

Good use of existing and stable technology. Doesn't get away from the new meter issue, and install times, but (and I work in the mobile data/telco data sector) I would be OK with this.

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Mackie Onyx Blackjack USB audio interface

Drummer Boy

It's for more than 2 channels

Higher bandwidth means greater simultaneous recording capability. I agree for 2 channels USB1.1 is fine, but try 8/16/24 and beyond and you need much more bandwidth.

I am also an IO2 fan, and have the original version. It's been great for me, but from other reviews I've seen of the Mackie, the quality of the AD/DAs is where the money goes.

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Sony to can MiniDisc Walkman

Drummer Boy
Thumb Up

Awesome replacement for compact casette tapes

I have 2 portable players, one a recorder player, and a HiFi unit.

All used until recently. As someone else mentioned the ability to record in digital, at reasonable quality was great, and I used it until recently, when I bought a Zoom portable solid state recorded.

I still have all the mixes from my old digital 8 tracks band recordings from the lates 90s/early noughties on MD.

The lack of proper computer hook up stalled their use for me.

RIP

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Can virtualisation rejuvenate your old servers?

Drummer Boy
Meh

Tried it, failed it, and might try it again!!

We did a new project for a customer and bought 2 dual quad core CPU boxes, plenty of RAM and disk, and VM Server, to run a multi web server site on (open source OS).

The next project we went back to separate metal, as it was a damn sight cheaper than buying the same processing power in a bigger model up chassis.

As for the power argument that was also a little moot, as we were comparing 2 bigger boxes with dual PSUs with 4 smaller boxes running single CPUs, so the draw was not much different, when actually measured going into the boxes. The web servers also took up the same amount of rack space, so no wins there either. Other than the ease of throwing up a new VM, there's nothing in it.

On top of that we have just discovered that one of our offices is running 'x' VMs with paid for OS's and have had to spend more than £20k on additional servers lics due to uncontrolled OS deployment. That's the bit of VM world that they forget to tell you about!!

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BOFH: CSI Haxploitation Cube Farm Apocalypse

Drummer Boy
Flame

No heat without fire!

I just wish I could stand in the middle of our data centre, with no aircon and it be silent and not cooking the chips as well!!!

They must remove all fans from their product placed Dell servers, and have water cooling thereby not needing aircon either, plus they must all be equipped with SSDs.

I wish I had their computing budget!!

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Commons hit by rash of laptop thefts

Drummer Boy
Holmes

That's what happens

when a large number of people with criminal records are housed in a single building!!

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A sysadmin's top ten tales of woe

Drummer Boy
FAIL

It never rains when it pours

Especially when the pouring is from the aircom overflow tray above the large IBM piece of tin that ran 15 warehouses (the real kind, not data ones!), spread across Europe.

It took 4 days to get the system back up, and then senior management suddenly saw the sense in spending several million on a separate site system.

They lost £5m per day.

Or the 'meat' error in the same company where the clerk pushed through a quarters VAT payments a day early and lost the company IRO £3m in VAT, on an entire warehouse of fags an booze.

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Government close to reduced NHS IT deal with CSC

Drummer Boy
Stop

CSC

Does it still sand for Can't Support Computers?

Every dealing I have with them leaves me with a growing feeling of incompetence!!

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The Royal Mail moves to the cloud

Drummer Boy
WTF?

Royal Mail and Delivery?

Given they can't deliver 35g letters on time, how do they intend to suceed here?

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BAA outhouses 200 IT workers over to Capgemini

Drummer Boy
FAIL

Yep

That's why we, when knowing we have to deal with outsourced customer IT depts, put our prices up!

The amount of grief to implement all but the simplest IT projects via an outsourcing organisation is too painful to behold!

As the saying goes - 'Accountants, know the cost of everything and the value of nothing.'!

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